Robin Dostoyevsky by Andy Hope 1930.
Foto panorámica / Installation view
First exhibition in Spain of Andy Hope 1930
A SUPERHERO AT THE CAC MÁLAGA
The Contemporary Art Centre of Málaga is presenting Robin Dostoyevsky by Andy Hope 1930, the first solo exhibition in Spain on one of Germany's most internationally celebrated artists. Nine, large-format works and a sculptural piece, all produced between 2010 and 2011 and never previously exhibited, comprise the contents of this exhibition by Andy Hope 1930, on display in the Centre's Espacio 2. The eclectic repertoire of characters, symbols and icons that characterise the work of an artist devoted to comics and science fiction is evident in the exhibition's title, which is an imaginary fusion of Robin, the companion of Batman's comic-book adventures, and the Russian writer Fyodor Dostoyevsky, the forerunner of Existentialism. Through this disconcerting combination, Andy Hope 1930 reveals his ability to reinterpret spaces, characters and past eras in order to transform them into a new reality.
8 April to 19 June 2011
Andy Hope 1930's work is an ongoing visual challenge to the viewer. This figurative artist's interest in going beyond established limits and in devising a creative universe that is difficult to place within a single artistic trend converts his works into a game of suspicion and ambiguities that provoke contradictory emotions and a degree of thematic confusion on the spectator's part. The very title of the exhibition now on display at the CAC Málaga, Robin Dostoyevsky by Andy Hope 1930, as well as the artist's chosen pseudonym, offer ample proof of this.
"Robin Dostoyevsky" is an imaginary character created by the artist through a fusion of Robin, the companion (and in many people's opionion, the gay friend) of the charismatic comic-book hero Batman, and the figure of the Russian writer Fyodor Dostoyevsky, father of Existentialism and renowned for his works that explore human psychology within the complex historical, social and political context of 19th-century Russia. The title of the present exhibition is completed by the addition of the name of the artist (previously known as Andreas Hofer). Andy Hope is the alter ego of "Dorian Hope", a character created by Arthur Cravan, who was himself a forerunner of Dada, a poet, boxer and nephew of Oscar Wilde. In addition, the date 1930 refers to the turning point in the Suprematist revolution led by Malevich, an artist who championed a total break with traditional art, while it is also the year in which various events took place that would mark the history of the 20th century, including the greatest economic crisis of the century and the rise of the Nazi party in Germany.
For Fernando Francés, director of the CAC Málaga: "The present exhibition on Andy Hope 1930 reveals the ability of this German artist to reinterpret spaces, formats, characters and historical moments, through which he produces a-temporal works that he uses in a Baroque and at times sinister manner to reflect on history and popular culture, provoking a disconcerting creative imbalance. This interest in recent history, in particular in German history and Nazi symbols, as well as in social transformation, to which he refers in a veiled manner, is also common to other Central European artists whose works reveal a particular sensitivity towards modern political events that are interpreted from the viewpoint of artistic creation".
Andy Hope 1930 deliberately uses a wide range of media (paintings, sculptures, collage, videos) in an ongoing process of experimentation that combines reality and fantasy, historical moments and literary genres, comics and science fiction. The result is a body of work not devoid of a certain nostalgia and extravagance, which the artist uses to reflect on history and on issues relating to authorship and identity through the combinations of names that are so characteristic of his work. In addition to the importance of Malevich and Paul Klee, Andy Hope 1930 has also acknowledged the influence of J. G. Ballard (the Chinese-born, British science fiction writer) and William Boroughs.
The nine, large-format works (on canvas, sack cloth and paper) that comprise the present exhibition at the CAC Málaga are an example of the artist's tendency to mix different genres and periods in time, given that they bring to mind 18th- and 19th-century portraiture.
Andy Hope 1930, the name that the artist has used to sign his works since 1997, began his studies at the prestigious Munich Fine Arts Academy then continued at the Chelsea College of Art & Design in London. He currently lives and works in Berlin. International recognition arrived with his solo exhibition Welt ohne Ende (World without End, 2005) at the Lenbachhaus, Munich, and This is Island Earth (2006) at the Hauser & Wirth Gallery, London.